The Weekly Standard Blog November 17, 2014
As Saudi Arabia undergoes its slow process of change, the matter of women and motor vehicles remains crucial. On October 24, Saudi women were summoned by a social media campaign to take to the roads in cars they own, typically, but do not drive.
The demonstration was called to mark the anniversary of last year’s protest by female drivers. On that occasion, at least 60 Saudi women operated cars in public. Since the desert monarchy is the only country in the world that forbids women from driving, a small number created a large sensation.
This year, the day before the event was to be held, the Saudi interior ministry, headed by Prince Muhammad Bin Nayef, warned that it would “apply the laws . . . against anyone who participates in a protest.” It condemned women driving cars as illegality that would “undermine social cohesion.” Prince Muhammad is the son of the late Wahhabi hardliner, Crown Prince Nayef Bin Abdul Aziz (1934-2012).